There are general facts or guidelines concerning uninsured motorist insurance coverage. First is that every owner of a vehicle should have uninsured motorist coverage since it is a benefit not only for the owner of the vehicle but also all passengers. Secondly you should realize that there are many drivers and owners of vehicles on the roads today that do not have insurance coverage. If you and the passengers in your vehicle are injured due to the fault of an owner or driver who does not have liability insurance coverage you would have little hope of being compensated for the injuries that you receive. Most owners and drivers of vehicles who do not carry liability insurance are considered generally to be “judgment proof”. This means that the owner and/or driver committing the negligent act probably does not have personal assets sufficient to pay for the damage caused by their negligent conduct.
The law in Iowa requires an insurance company who provides insurance coverage to a vehicle owner to offer uninsured motorist coverage. The insurance agent from whom you purchased insurance coverage must provide you with uninsured motorist coverage or obtain a signature from you declining coverage. This is for your benefit. Unfortunately all that an insurance company is required to provide are state minimums of $20,000/$40,000 per accident. I encourage everyone to obtain the maximum allowed for underinsured coverage. For a very reasonable cost most insurance companies would allow you to purchase uppers of $500,000 of uninsured motorist coverage. At a bare minimum you should purchase at least as much uninsured motorist coverage as you do for liability insurance coverage.
Uninsured motorist coverage will provide compensation for all damages which you could obtain from an insured driver. This would include compensation for past and future wage loss, past and future medical, past and future pain and suffering and past and future loss of function. Furthermore uninsured motorist coverage provides compensation for hit and run drivers or other tortious drivers who have left the scene of an accident and identity unknown.
If you have questions concerning uninsured motorist coverage please contact us at the Beattie Law Firm. We are here to help you and discussed further with you uninsured motorist general facts.